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* ADB grants US$ 12.8 million loan assistance for conflict-affected areas of Sri Lanka
Tue, Mar 9, 2010, 08:59 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Mar 09, Colombo: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has granted additional financial assistance of US$ 12.8 million for the rehabilitation of conflict-affected areas in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka, particularly to assist the return and resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

The loan will be provided from its concessional Asian Development Fund (ADF) for the ongoing North East Community Restoration and Development (NECORD) Project II.

The loan will help to rebuild urgently needed community, social and economic infrastructure in health, education, agriculture, rural electrification, rural access and administration in the Northern Province, a press release issued by the ADB said.

"The project will assist the government in meeting the urgent basic needs of the war weary people of the North, particularly returning IDPs, including a significant number of physically disabled people, households headed by women, and children," said Mookiah Thiruchelvam, project implementation officer of ADB's South Asia Department.

ADB's Country Director for Sri Lanka Richard Vokes said the basic social and economic facilities need to be restored if affected communities are to recover and return to normal.

"NECORD II has a well-established implementation structure and channeling the additional funding through this project provides a quick and effective way of meeting these urgent needs," he said. The ADB loan, which is sourced from loan savings and cancellations within the ongoing ADB-supported portfolio in Sri Lanka, will carry a 40-year term, including a grace period of 10 years and an annual interest rate of 1%.

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